To say the last weeks have been upsetting is a bit of an understatement. Even a little bit of a disrespect to the immensity of the ongoings around the world, yet I have no other words.
We wake up to find that a plane full of innocent travelers, having embarked on a commute of promise, failed to make it safely to their destination. The promise of seeing loved ones again. The promise of a long-awaited holiday painstakingly saved up for. The promise of commuting towards a new beginning. A promise most of us take for granted. The promise that when you board a plane, it is but a mundane and common mode of travel that calls for no second thoughts.
And then elsewhere in the world, the ringing from the aftermath of bombs linger on in people’s ears. Children are being maimed and killed. Innocent lives cut short. Bright futures dimmed.
In times like these, I read the news with tears. And I ask: What kind of a world have my children been brought into?
I know it’s rather premature of me since my children are only young. However, I do already dread having to let go of my children into this world.
Sometimes, I look at my baby, comfortably snuggled into her favourite teddy and tucked warmly under the covers. She looks content, peaceful. Her little chest heaving ever so slightly with each breath taken. Her countenance is fully relaxed. A little smile curves the edges of her pretty, delicate lips. I wonder what she’s dreaming of.
I hop on my phone to read the news. Bad choice. My husband has always shunned the news as much as he could. “It’s always bad, depressing stuff,” he says, adopting the same approach that his mother had since he was young.
Tears sting my eyes. Tears that mostly sting of anger. My maternal instincts kick in. Not just for my own children, but for the children in the world who have not done an ounce of wrong deserving of their suffering. I turn back and look at my child in absolute terror. Again, I question: What kind of a world have I brought my child into? I feel a deep urge to protect children, and not just my own.
I never thought about it from this angle in the past but when I chose to bring my child into this world, I had also chosen to put my child through the cycle of life. The joys, the sorrows, the successes, the hardships of life. I chose to bring my child into this world full of human greed, suffering, sin. There is also light, hope, faith. But I’m not sure if I can bear the fact that the bad things can mar and cast a blemish on my little ones’ innocence.
Tonight, my little one has a bit of snuffly nose and she wants to snuggle next to mum. Usually, I’d say no as we all end up having a bit of an uncomfortable sleep (Parents will understand. Toddlers come armed with the tendency to do bedtime somersaults and you often end up with their bum or their feet in your face.). But tonight, I say yes. I snuggle a little closer, I hold her a little tighter. A comforting whiff of her hair. I know I can’t control time, neither does my minute hope seem to bear much power to change the world and the way life works. But tonight, all I can do is cherish the here and now.
Do you ever marvel at the innocence of your children and feel sad at the disparity between their beauty and this world? Luckily my kids are still young, for I’m definitely nowhere ready to let go of them.